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Where'd They Get Their Guns?

An Analysis of the Firearms Used in High-Profile Shootings, 1963 to 2001

Date: September 15, 1999

Location: Wedgewood Baptist Church, Fort Worth, Texas

Alleged Shooter: Larry Gene Ashbrook

People Killed: Eight (shooter committed suicide)

People Injured: Seven

Firearm(s): Ruger P85 9mm pistol and a .380 pistol


Ashbrook, who had a history of paranoia and mental instability, shot three people in the Wedgewood Baptist Church lobby before entering the sanctuary where more than 150 people were waiting for a concert to begin. He shot 11 more in the sanctuary before shooting himself, killing eight in all. He also threw a pipe bomb, with no injuries.

How Firearm(s) Acquired

Both weapons were acquired legally at a flea market from federally licensed firearms dealers in 1992.


  1. Jim Cummins, "Investigation Into Mass Shooting at Ft. Worth Church," NBC News Transcripts, NBC Nightly News, 16 September 1999.
  2. Paul Duggan, "On Tape, A �Methodical' Massacre; In Footage of Church Shooting, Police See Gunman Pick Targets," The Washington Post, 18 September 1999, sec. A, p. 2.
  3. Jim Yardley, "Death in a Church: The Overview," The New York Times, 18 September 1999, sec. A, p. 12.


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 All contents � 2001 Violence Policy Center


The Violence Policy Center is a national non-profit educational foundation that conducts research on violence in America and works to develop violence-reduction policies and proposals. The Center examines the role of firearms in America, conducts research on firearms violence, and explores new ways to decrease firearm-related death and injury.